FATF - Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an inter-governmental body to combat money laundering and terror financing among other financial crimes, expressing the hope that it will uphold its objectives. India has congratulated China for being elected Vice President of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said 'Congratulations to China on its election as Vice President of Financial Action Task Force at the FATF plenary meeting on February 23. We remain hopeful that China would uphold and support the objectives and standards of FATF in a balanced, objective, impartial and holistic way. China's election to the FATF assumes significance as Pakistan is set to be put in the watchdog's grey list, which puts countries under the scanner for not implementing the body's objectives, in June this year.
Saudi Arabia -The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has announced entry of women to enlist in the military. According to authorities, interested female candidates have given time to apply for positions with the rank of soldier in the provinces of Riyadh, Mecca, al-Qassim and Medina. Saudi Arabia's public prosecutor's office said it would also begin recruiting women investigators for the first time. The kingdom has also opened 140 positions for women at airports and border crossings, a historic first that the government said drew 107,000 female applicants. It should be noted that Saudi women last month were given permission to attend football matches and to open their own businesses without the consent of their male relatives.
India- Iran - India and Iran have signed nine pacts, the resultant of which will allow India to lease part of the strategic Chabahar port, near the mouth of the Gulf of Oman. A key focus of the discussions was infrastructure, particularly Iran's Chabahar port. India has committed to invest $500 million in developing the port. During Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 2016 visit to Iran, the countries signed a commercial contract envisaging development and operation of the port's two terminals and five berths. India badly wants the port developed, believing it will help India gain access to war-torn Afghanistan, where India is involved in rebuilding efforts. India also needs a route for its companies to take into energy-rich Central Asia. Pakistan, India's hostile neighbor to the northwest, does not allow overland access. Among the nine agreements signed lease between Iran's Port and Maritime Organization and India Ports Global Limited. The deal allows the Indian company to take over and run a part of Chabahar port's multi-purpose and container terminal for 18 months. Besides giving India access to Central Asia, the port will also help India counter China's regional influence. China is currently developing Gwadar port, in Pakistan, which also gives China a way into Africa.
Saudi Arabia-In a surprising move, women in Saudi Arabia have been given the go-ahead to start businesses without the permission of a male guardian. Earlier in the past women needed a guardian's approval and had to visit a notary to document the founding of a company, from Sunday a new system will carry out all start-up procedures electronically, with no special permissions required. The move is part of a shift inside a strongly conservative kingdom to offer more freedom to women and more broadly, to reshape Saudi culture along more secular, modern lines. In keeping with the spirit of modernisation, the announcement was made via Twitter. Saudi women make up just a fraction of the labour force in the country, but their participation in the economy is rising fast. In July 2017, the country's Ministry of Labour and Social Development announced that women accounted for 30 per cent of the private sector workforce - a rise of 130 per cent over the previous four years
UNICEF- A new study by UNICEF has revealed that nearly 600,000 newborn die within 28 days of their birth in India every year. The study also revealed that a quarter of global neonatal deaths take place in India each year, also showed that the country has remarkably reduced the under-five mortality rate. The first 28 days of life - the neonatal period - are the most vulnerable time for a child's survival. And children face the highest risk of dying in their first month of life, at a global rate of 19 deaths per 1,000 live births. According to the report, India's neonatal mortality rate (deaths per 1,000 live births) is 25.4 and is ranked at number 12 among 52 'low middle-income countries' in terms of risk for newborns. India's ranking, though, is better than that of Pakistan's, the country with the worst newborn mortality rate. The report covered 184 countries and India has been ranked 31, keeping the world's seventh largest economy below 153 countries who have better survival rates for their newborns. A year earlier, India was the 28th worst country among 184 nations in terms of neonatal mortality.
Global corruption perception index- The index developed by Transparency International, which ranks 180 countries and territories by their perceived levels of public sector corruption, placed India at the 81st place. In the 2016, India was in the 79th place among 176 countries. The index uses a scale of 0 to 100, where 0 is highly corrupt and 100 is very clean. India has been ranked 81st in the global corruption perception index for 2017, released by Transparency International, which named the country among the 'worst offenders' in terms of graft and press freedom in the Asia Pacific region.
Petro -Venezuela become first sovereign country to officially launch its own crypto-currency called Petro. The currency is backed by oil, gas, gold and diamond reserves to circumvent US-led financial sanctions. Aiming to combat most severe economic collapses of modern times, the beleaguered administration of President Nicolas Maduro announced it had begun a presale of virtual currency backed by the nation's vast petroleum reserves. The government, which had announced plans for the new digital currency late last year, said the initiative was a response to a financial crisis marked by a profound devaluation of the national currency, the bolivar, and quadruple-digit inflation.
UN Peacekeeping mission -It is a peacekeeping programme initiated by the United Nations is a role held by the Department of Peacekeeping Operations as "a unique and dynamic instrument developed by the organization as a way to help countries torn by conflict to create the conditions for lasting peace. In an effort to support the programme India is sending around 2,300 Army personnel for South Sudan to join the UN peace keeping mission in the war-torn African country. The army personnel, joining the UN mission, are from Infantry battalion of Garhwal Rifles regiment. Indian unit will be in operational control of the sensitive Jonglei state. According to official figures, India is the largest cumulative troop contributor, having provided almost 200,000 troops in nearly 50 of the 71 UN peacekeeping missions over the past six decades, including 13 of the current 16 missions. Last year, a total of 7,606 Indian peacekeepers were deployed in UN missions.
UN Development Partnership Fund -The India-UN Development Partnership Fund is a dedicated facility within the United Nations Fund for South-South Cooperation established in 2017. It is supported and led by the Government of the Republic of India, managed by the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation, and implemented in collaboration with the United Nations system. India has pledged an additional $100 million towards the UN partnership fund, significantly scaling up its support to sustainable development projects across the developing world. The India-UN development partnership fund was set up earlier this year as a partnership between India and the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC). Anjani Kumar, counsellor at the Permanent Mission of India to the UN, announced the multi-year contribution at the 2017 UN Pledging Conference for Development Activities on Monday. This contribution would be in addition to $10.582 million India is contributing to various other UN programmes, Kumar said. 'I am happy to announce that India has now decided to significantly scale up the contribution to the fund through a multi-year contribution of $100 million,' Kumar said on behalf of India. 'India believes that the UN should have the necessary resources to finance its activities, in an appropriate and balanced manner,' he said.
World's smallest satellite - Japan successfully launched on the world's smallest satellite-carrying rocket following a failed attempt in January last year. According to a release from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, 'The rocket about the size of a utility pole, measuring 10 meters in length and 50 centimeters in diameter, lifted off from the Uchinoura Space Center in Kagoshima Prefecture and delivered its payload to its intended orbit'. The No. 5 vehicle of the SS-520 series carried a microsatellite weighing about 3 kilograms developed by the University of Tokyo to collect imagery of the Earth's surface. The launch was aimed at verifying JAXA's technology used to launch small rockets made with commercially available components at lower cost amid growing global demand for microsatellites. The agency used components found in home electronics and smartphones for the rocket. JAXA launched the No. 4 vehicle on Jan. 15 last year, but terminated its flight shortly after liftoff due to a communications problem. The agency found that vibrations during liftoff caused a short circuit, leading to a loss of power in the data transmitter. For Saturday's launch, the agency made more than 40 improvements to prevent a recurrence.
Ashgabat Agreement -The Ashgabat Agreement is a Multimodal transport agreement between Oman, Iran, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan for creating an international transport and transit corridor facilitating transportation of goods between Central Asia and the Persian Gulf. India has joined the Ashgabat agreement, which envisages setting up of an international transport and transit corridor linking central Asia with the Persian Gulf to significantly ramp up trade and investment. According to official sources, India's accession to the agreement will come into force on Saturday(February 3, 2018) . After approval of the Cabinet, India had deposited the instrument of accession with Turkmenistan in April 2016.
Delhi Declaration -It is declaration made by the ASEAN member states to mark the 25th Anniversary of ASEAN-India Dialogue Relations. Leader of the states declared to further strengthen and deepen the ASEAN-India Strategic Partnership for mutual benefit, across the whole spectrum of political-security, economic, socio-cultural and development cooperation, through further strengthening of relevant institutional mechanisms and broadening of the network between government institutions, parliamentarians, business circles, scientists, academicians, think-tanks, media, youth and other stakeholders, for the building of a peaceful, harmonious, caring and sharing community in our regions. Continue to exert efforts and cooperate towards the full, effective and timely implementation of the Plan of Action to Implement the ASEAN-India Partnership for Peace, Progress and Shared Prosperity (2016-2020). Further enhance high-level engagement and cooperation within the existing framework of the ASEAN-India Dialogue Partnership and ASEAN-led mechanisms, such as the ASEAN-India Summit, the East Asia Summit (EAS), the Post Ministerial Conference with India (PMC+1), the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), the ASEAN Defence Ministers' Meeting (ADMM) Plus, and other ASEAN-India ministerial/sectoral mechanisms.
Global Centre for Cyber Security -It is new organisation created to counter emerging cyber security threats and help connect leaders from business and government to collaborate on various security issues. The organisation was formed by World Economic Forum (WEF) will be fully operational in March 2018. The cyber agency will act as a sort of independent, multinational cyber threat information sharing platform for companies to improve digital security writ large. To begin with, it will reach out to key industry players and G-20 countries to make this platform a success for dialogue and real-time action on cyber threats. The Global Centre for Cybersecurity has already gained the support of multiple prominent businesses and law enforcement organizations, including British telecommunications giant BT Group, U.S. microchip maker Qualcomm, Russian financial institution Sberbank and international crime fighting agency Interpol.
NASA - The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is an independent agency of the executive branch of the US government. Scientists from NASA have shown interest about a new thermal spray coating technology used for gas turbine engine in spacecraft developed by a Rajasthan-based researcher named Dr Satish Tailor. Expressing his interest in the research, James L. Smialek, a scientist from NASA wrote to Dr Tailor after it was published in the journal Ceramics International and Thermal Spray Bulletin. Dr Tailor while working at MEC as a chief scientist, Research and Development had developed the controlled segmented Yttria-Stabilised Zirconia (YSZ)-Plasma sprayed coating technology, which according to him could reduce the thermal spray coating cost by almost 50%. Besides, vertical cracks (segmentation) in the coating are beneficial for gas turbine engine application used in spacecraft. Currently researchers are developing such cracks through very expensive processes (in several crore) and cracks are generated during the coating deposition process, and crack generation is not controllable.
Warren Anderson, who headed Union Carbide when a gas leak in its Bhopal pesticide plant killed thousands, is dead, the New York Times reported.
Anderson died Sep 29 at a nursing home in Vero Beach, Florida, aged 92, the Times said. His death, not announced by his family, was confirmed from public records.
Anderson flew to Bhopal four days after the world's worst industrial disaster and was arrested. But after paying bail he left India and never returned to face trial.
A move to force Muslim women who cover their faces to sit in a separate enclosed public gallery at Australia's Parliament House has been reversed, media reported .
Earlier this month, Speaker Bronwyn Bishop and Senate President Stephen Parry approved new rules applying to anyone wearing "facial coverings", ABC News reported.
NASA scientists have developed a tool that would help airlines minimise weather delays and save both flight time and fuel.
Known as Dynamic Weather Routes (DWR), this computer software tool is programmed to constantly analyse air traffic throughout the National Airspace System along with the ever-shifting movements of weather severe enough to require an airliner to effect a course change.
When the DWR tool finds an opportunity for an airliner to fly more efficiently to its destination, saving time and money, while also remaining at a safe distance from the storm, the computer rings an alert to the airline flight dispatcher.
The first Man Booker prize to allow American nominees was won by an Australian, with Richard Flanagan triumphing for a novel of love and war that tells the harrowing stories of prisoners and captors on the infamous Burma railway.
Flanagan won for The Narrow Road to the Deep North, with philosopher AC Grayling, who chaired the judges, describing the book as "an absolutely superb novel, a really outstanding work of literature", the Guardian reported.
French economist Jean Tirole has won the Nobel Prize in economics for his work on market power and regulation.
Tirole, 61, wins a prize of 8m Swedish krona (Ã‚Â£692,000). He is six years younger than the average age of Nobel economics laureates.
This year's Nobel Prize for literature has been awarded to French author Patrick Modiano, it was announced on Oct 9,2014.
He has been awarded the prize "For the art of memory with which he has evoked the most ungraspable human destinies and uncovered the life-world of the occupation".
John O'Keefe, May-Britt Moser and Edvard Moser Ã¢â‚¬â€œ have shared the 2014 Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine, the Nobel Committee announced on Oct -6 ,2014 ( Monday).
The Nobel assembly at the Karolinska Institute has decided to award one half of the physiology or medicine prize to John O'Keefe and the other half jointly to May-Britt Moser and Edvard Moser for their discovery of cells that constitute a positioning system in the brain, Xinhua reported.
With a goal to end the US' sole reliance on the Russian Space Shuttle in 2017, NASA selected two American firms to transport astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS).
The space agency chose the US multinational Boeing Co and California-based Space Exploration Technologies Corp (SpaceX) for the multi-billion dollar contract to carry astronauts in space taxis to and from orbit using their CST-100 and Crew Dragon spacecraft, respectively.
In a surprise find, palaeontologists have discovered the world's first known swimming dinosaur Ã¢â‚¬â€œ a 15-metre-long behemoth with a crocodile-like face.The creature called Spinosaurus aegyptiacus had feet well suited to paddling and a sail-like structure rising from its spine.It also had unusually dense bones, possibly to help weigh it down as it hunted its underwater prey.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi Monday sought Japan's help for skill development in India. Stating that 65 percent of India's population was young, Modi said: "In 2020, when the world would need a workforce, we are preparing for it from now itself, so that we can match the global workforce."
"India is a youthful nation. We want to give importance to skill development. Be it quality, zero defect, discipline, we give importance to it," Modi said while addressing business leaders here.
Japanese researchers have successfully implanted lab-grown retinal tissue from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) into a woman in her 70s Ã¢â‚¬â€œ the world's first recipient of stem cells.
In a two-hour procedure, a team of three eye specialists led by Yasuo Kurimoto of the Kobe City Medical Center General Hospital transplanted a 1.3 by 3.0 millimetre sheet of retinal pigment epithelium cells into an eye of the woman who was suffering from an age-related macular degeneration.
Sakari Momoi, a 111-year-old Japanese citizen, was Wednesday officially recognised in Tokyo as the oldest man in the world by the Guinness World Records award committee.
Momoi bags the title after the death in early June of previous record holder, US citizen Alexander Imich, who was just one day older than the Japanese, the committee said in a statement.
Hiroshima, the Japanese city that suffered US atomic bombing in 1945 during the World War II, commemorated the 69th anniversary of the bombing Wednesday at the city's Peace Memorial Park.
In what could be a game changer in space exploration, NASA has successfully tested a "microwave thruster system" that requires no propellant to generate thrust.
The engine appears to produce propulsion through electricity and nothing else.
The governor of Belgium's Liege province Monday to the victims of the First World War (WWI) as part of ceremonies to mark the centenary of the outbreak of the war.
Speaking at the Cointe Inter-Allied Memorial in Liege, Governor Michel Foret asked gathered dignitaries to remember all those who died during the conflict.
Japan Monday announced public-private investment of 3.5 trillion yen (Rs.2.03 trillion) in India.
India and Japan held official talks Monday in the third day of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's five-day sojourn to Japan.
On July 20, 1969, Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to set foot on the moon.
Forty-five years later, NASA will celebrate Monday the giant leap by honouring Armstrong, who died in 2012, with a renaming ceremony of the historic "operations and checkout building" at Cape Canaveral in Florida, the launch site.
Japan took a historic step on July 01 2014 by ending a ban that has kept the military from fighting abroad since 1945. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe but a move that has riled China and worries many Japanese voters.
The change, the most dramatic shift in policy since Japan set up its post-war armed forces 60 years ago, will widen Japan's military options by ending the ban on exercising "collective self-defence," or aiding a friendly country under attack.
To Honour an Indian-American scientist Akhouri Sinha, The United States named a mountain in Antarctica as Mt. Sinha. The mountain was named as the recognition of Sinha's work done as an explorer in 1971-72.
Sinha's pioneering biological research expedition has provided critical data about the animal populations in Antarctica.
Earth's largest water reservoir might be located deep inside the Earth's mantle. This was revealed by a study published in the journal Science on 13 June 2014.
The study was conducted by the Northwestern geophysicist Steve Jacobsen and University of New Mexico seismologist Brandon Schmandt.
The Indian government has given in principle approval to an MoU to allow China to set up industrial parks the country. The move comes ahead of the five-day visit of Vice-President Hamid Ansari to China from Thursday.
China, which has established five industrial parks in ASEAN countries like Cambodia, Indonesia and Vietnam, is keen to set up similar industrial parks in India. The states being examined for the purpose include Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Haryana.
National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) plan to build Advanced Technology Large Aperture Space Telescope (ATLAST) in Portsmouth. It will be the World's most powerful and largest telescope once it is built.
A seven-foot tall bronze statue of India's freedom movement leader will be the centrepiece of the Mahatma Gandhi Memorial of North Texas with walls inscribed with some of his quotes.
After four years of planning and fundraising, ground was broken at Thomas Jefferson Park in Irving for the memorial last Saturday, according to dallasnews.com.
Royal Navy Submarine Service of United Kingdom appointed female submariners for the first.
Pioneering lieutenants Maxine Stiles, Alex Olsson and Penny Thackray on 5 May 2014 have become the first women to serve in the Royal Navy Submarine Service. This step was taken for the first time in the 110-year history of the Submarine Service.
The government will soon operationalise electronic travel authorization or e-Visa facility to inbound tourists from 180 countries.
According to Tourism Secreatry Parvez Dewan, the government will operationalise the electronic travel authorization within a year.
Dewan was speaking at the inauguration of the first edition of Incredible India Travel Bazaar (IITB), organised by Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) in partnership of with the tourism ministry.
As the world observes World TB Day Monday, a shocking research reveals that despite improved medication and government as well as aid agencies' efforts, the number of children suffering from tuberculosis (TB) annually has doubled since 2011.
Researchers from Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) and Harvard Medical School (HMS) in Boston have estimated that around one million children suffer from TB annually- twice the number previously thought to have tuberculosis and three times the number that are diagnosed every year, the researchers claimed.
India and Singapore have won the 2014 edition of the UN-Water's Water for Life Best Practices Award for their sustainable practices of water resources.
This was announced Friday during an official UN ceremony here to mark World Water Day 2014 that falls March 22.
Close on the heels of the US decision to relinquish its oversight of Internet Corporation for Assignment of Names and Numbers (ICANN), a global multi-stakeholder meeting Ã¢â‚¬â€œ NETmundial Ã¢â‚¬â€œ on the future of internet governance will be held in Sao Paulo, Brazil, April 23-24. Nearly 800 delegates representing government, private sector, civil society, academia and technical communities, including several from India, are expected to attend this meeting.